We tested each device to see how quickly a user can get up and running, as well as time for software updates or to sync courses to the device. Most all of the devices require either installation of software on a computer, registration on the web, or both – can a normal person do this without tearing their hair out? As a side note, one of reviewers has no hair – so we tested if he could complete the setup without throwing his computer out the window.

Setup for devices ranged from opening the box and taking the device straight to the course, to more involved setups requiring software downloads, installations, driver updates, membership registration and course loading. And don’t forget to check if your computer is supported – only slightly over half of the GPS devices tested are compatible with Macs, see Table 1 below. Our tests were conducted both on PC and Macs, if supported. We are now adding the ease of syncing to receive course and software updates into the Setup score for the device.

Table 1. Golf GPS Device Support

Golf GPS Device Windows Support Mac Support
Bushnell Hybrid Laser GPS Windows 7/XP/Vista OS X
Bushnell NEO XS Watch TBD TBD
Garmin Approach G8 Vista+ 10.7+
Garmin Approach G7 Vista+ 10.7+
Garmin Approach G6 XP SP3+ 10.5.8+
Garmin Approach S4 Watch XP SP3+ 10.5.8+
Garmin Approach S3 Watch XP SP3+ 10.5.8+
Garmin Approach S2 Watch XP SP3+ 10.5.8+
Garmin Approach S1 Watch XP SP3+ 10.5.8+
GolfBuddy PT4 TBD TBD
Matrix SHOTMATE Voice XP/Vista/7 No
ScoreBand Golf NA NA
SkyCaddie Aire TBD TBD
SkyCaddie LINX Watch TBD TBD
SkyCaddie TOUCH Watch TBD TBD
SkyCaddie SGXw 2000/XP/Vista 10.3.9+
SkyCaddie SGX 2000/XP/Vista 10.3.9+
Sonocaddie V500 2000/XP/Vista No